This paper presents a design, an architecture, and performance evaluation of high-performance network of PC cluster, called Maestro. Most networks of recent clusters have been organized based on WAN or LAN technology, due to their market availability. However, communication protocols and functions of such conventional networks are not optimal for parallel computing, which requires low latency and high bandwidth communication. In this paper, we propose two optimizations for high-performance communication: (1) transferring in burst as many packets as the receiving buffer accepts at once, and (2) having each hardware component pass one data unit to another in a pipelined manner. We have developed a network interface and a switch, which are composed of dedicated hardware modules to realize these optimizations. An implementatin of the message passing library developed on Maestro cluster is also described. Performance evaluation shows that the proposed optimizations can extract the potential performance of the physical layer efficiently and improve the performance in communication.
PC cluster network architecture protocol message passing performance evaluation